Atlantic Cities
CityLab

Introducing CityLab

This afternoon our colleagues at Atlantic LIVE announced an ambitious new event that everyone here in our offices is understandably excited about: "CityLab: Urban Solutions to Global Challenges," coming this October from The Aspen Institute, The Atlantic, and Bloomberg Philanthropies, is a two-and-a-half day summit designed to bring together city leaders from around the world for a series of conversations about the big ideas, experiments, and innovations that are currently shaping the world's cities. The staff of The Atlantic Cities knows all too well how a small experiment in a single city can quickly spread and change the way we all live, so we're pretty psyched to see this event start to come together.

In that same spirit, over the next few months you're going to see a handful of new regular features appear on the site that reflect our enthusiasm for the city-as-laboratory. But before we can get started, we're going to need your help.

We've got contributors in an awful lot of cities all over the world, but we can't be everywhere all at once. So we need to borrow your eyes and ears. If you know about, have heard about, or better yet, have had personal experience with an amazing (or wild, or disastrous) new urban project or a particularly impressive individual innovator in your city, we want to hear from you. It doesn't matter if it's big or small, if you're an everyday citizen, an entrepreneur, or the manager of a parking meter pilot program for your city's department of transportation, we'll look at any and all nominations. And then later this year we'll start to report back on what we've found, from ideas to execution to conclusions we can draw so far. We'll also host a number of conversations of our own here on the site between city leaders of all types on lessons they've learned from their peers and advice they're ready to offer to any city willing to listen. The idea is to end up with a kind of yearbook of urban experiments that anyone can look back through and see exactly which ideas were tried and honed in 2013.

Already thought of a great example for us? Don't wait: Email me with the details at smathis (at) theatlantic.com, and make sure to put "CityLab" in the subject of your email. And stay tuned for the latest from the Lab.

Sommer Mathis is editor of The Atlantic Cities. Previously she spent five years editing and reporting on the D.C. metro area at DCist.com and TBD.com. All posts »

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